Lake Junaluska hosts its 19th annual Appalachian Christmas on Friday and Saturday, December 7–8, with additional events on Thursday, December 6, and Sunday, December 9, for those with lodging packages. Festivities include multiple concerts, storytelling and a craft show with more than 40 artisans.
“This is a festive and authentically Appalachian event,” says Lake Junaluska marketing director Mary Bates. “That, along with the beautiful setting, makes Appalachian Christmas a celebration people return to year after year.”
The lineup includes two concerts by 16-voice ensemble the Lake Junaluska Singers. First, Handel’s Messiah is performed alongside a regional chorus and area musicians on Friday, December 7, at 7:30 p.m. Second, the ensemble performs Appalachian Christmas songs, readings, and carols with audience participation on Saturday, December 8, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday’s program features Carol of the Bells, O Holy Night, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas and Benjamin Britten’s Ceremony of Carols.
On Saturday, December 8, at 2 p.m., renowned local storyteller and ballad singer Sheila Kay Adams performs. Adams won the 2013 National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship Award, which recognizes folk and traditional artists for their artistic excellence and efforts to conserve America’s culture for future generations. “We’re excited to introduce Adams to the lineup,” says Bates. “She’s a seventhgeneration storyteller and master of her art form.”
The Appalachian Christmas Craft Show, run by the Junaluska Woman’s Club, takes place Saturday, December 8, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. A morning worship service open to overnight guests draws the festivities to a close on Sunday, December 9, at 9:30 a.m. at the historic Memorial Chapel.
Appalachian Christmas vacation packages include lodging, meals, tickets to all performances and a Cookies & Carols event on Thursday, December 6, from 7–8:30 p.m.
Individual concert tickets are $23 reserved, $18 general admission. Discounted ticket bundles ($40) for all three concerts are available at Lake Junaluska’s Bethea Welcome Center. To purchase tickets or vacation packages or to learn more, visit LakeJunaluska.com/Christmas.